A woman on the 400 block of Harlem Avenue was having a small get-together with friends when her cousin came to the door with three friends and robbed her at gunpoint. The incident occurred on July 21 at 5:27 p.m.

The victim was comfortably sitting at home with her boyfriend and four other friends when she heard a knock on the door. She checked to see who it was and recognized her cousin Braxton J. Harper, so she opened the door. Upon opening the door the victim noticed that three friends accompanied Harper”one she knew, Anthony Webster, and two she had never met before.

As the four offenders entered the living room, they allegedly displayed firearms and started yelling and demanding that everyone lie down on the floor. The offenders then allegedly started to demand money from all the victims. Meanwhile the owner of the residence was screaming at her cousin, Harper, and dialed 911. As she was dialing, one of the unknown offenders allegedly hit her in the mouth with his firearm, pulled down her dress exposing her breasts and pushed her down to the floor.

Once the offenders realized that they were not going to get any money from the victims, they fled the apartment. The owner reported to authorities that her cousin lives on Austin Avenue and typically drives a tan Lincoln Town Car.

 A woman said she was robbed at gunpoint in an alley of the 200 block of Lathrop Avenue. The incident occurred at 9:15 p.m. on July 21.

The victim had left her home to go to the local 7/11. There she was going to give some money to her cousin. On her way a tan-colored Ford Explorer stopped her. Inside the vehicle were two men. The passenger displayed his black semi-automatic handgun and allegedly told the victim, “We’ve been watching you.” The offender then demanded that the victim hand over all of her money, including the funds she keeps in her bra. Once the offenders collected the $300, they fled the scene westbound on Rockford and then south on Lathrop toward Madison Street.

The victim ran back to her apartment and told her friend of the incident. Together they decided not to call police immediately but instead chase the offenders through the streets of Forest Park. They reportedly ran to their car parked in the rear of their property and once on the road were able to catch up to the Ford Explorer. They allegedly followed the Explorer to the 400 block of Harlem where it parked. It was at this point that the victim decided to turn around, go home and call the police.

When questioned by authorities, the victim could not recall the Explorer’s license plate number. She could also not explain why she failed to call authorities right away or even during her pursuit of the offenders.

The officer responding to the call felt the hood of the victim’s car and reported it was cool to the touch. He believed that on such a hot night the hood should be warm if it were driven just 15 minutes prior. He also questioned how the victim could possibly run 100 feet to her home, enter her home, notify her roommate of the incident, decided to chase after the offenders, run to her parked car across the alley, make the appropriate turns to safely back out onto Rockford, catch up to the fleeing offenders’ vehicle, follow it to the 400 block of Harlem, approximately one mile away, and then return with a vehicle that has a cool hood.

Earlier that night the police department had responded to a robbery on the 400 block of Harlem. That victim reported the offender’s name to be Anthony Webster.

In this incident the victim reported that she is engaged to marry Charles Webster. A background check on that name revealed that her fiancé also goes by the name Anthony Webster, the same name given at the robbery that took place earlier that evening.

 These items were taken from the records of the Forest Park Police Department between July 18 and July 24 and represents a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Anyone named in this report has only been charged with a crime. The cases have not yet been adjudicated.

“compiled by Povilas Zukauskas